Tucson Police Must Now Notify Public Immediately of an In-Custody Death

The Mayor and Tucson City Council yesterday, June 30, approved a policy that requires at least some details to be released immediately when a person dies in custody of the Tucson Police Department (TPD). The move comes after the details of the death of Carlos Ingram-Lopez weren't released publicly for more than two months after the 27-year-old died from "sudden cardiac arrest in the setting of acute cocaine intoxication and physical restraint" while in TPD custody on April 21.

The new policy requires the “immediate notification” of in-custody deaths to both the community and Mayor and Council, even if the information may be preliminary. The move is similar to notifications provided for shootings involving police officers. Council members also approved the initial framework set forth by Mayor Regina Romero for a number of policy recommendations, including seeking public input for a community safety pilot program.